Sep 11, 2009


Do you ever wonder why some things in your stitchy life torment you to distraction, and then, when you do submit, they turn out to be your favorite project?

Such is my life with "Wandering".

I loved this chart the moment I saw it, so naturally I had to have it RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE! I bought canvas and all of the threads, etc. etc., and then promptly put it in my stash.

Then, as confessed previously, I started/stopped the damn thing multiple times. I can't find the first try, but trust me when I tell you that it wasn't pretty.

For the second attempt, I got cocky and picked out my own colors. As you can see...disaster: Just what in the heck I thought I was trying to do here escapes me at the moment, but I'm sure in my head it was lovely. Just lovely.

So then I decided to try this piece on congress cloth:
This one's not toooo bad, actually. I love love love that Waterlilies (Burnt Toast), so maybe I'll tuck this one away for a bit and come back to it later.

Finally, we arrive at the current incarnation....a Wandering v4.0, if you will:
This one seems to be a keeper so far. I did, however, discover that I will NOT be able to keep those bubbles in Impressions, so after careful consideration I've decided to stitch all of the swirls and window panes and whatever background I can and then do the rest in the Soie Cristale as soon as it gets here.

Why is it that my confidence level as a stitcher drops dramatically whenever I try to do something on my own and it just doesn't come out like I had envisioned in my punky little brain?

This thought rattled around last night until I jumped out of bed at 4am shouting: "EUREKA! I am not a needlework DESIGNER! I am a needlework STITCHER! It's OK if I just do what I'm told and enjoy the project as is. It's OK if I realize that the DESIGNER is smarter than I am and that he/she has spent hours and hours of toil to get the piece just right! It's OK if I can't come up with something better! I am a STITCHER! Not a DESIGNER!"

(The real reason I jumped out of bed at 4am was that my nine-pound puppy tot decided to have a round of projectile vomiting that would have made Linda Blair (of The Exorcist fame) proud. Poor little guy must have had too many treats yesterday, because it was all he could do to come up from under the covers to spew all over me and the freshly laundered sheets. Sigh.)

(The best news is that I did NOT freak out at all. I gently scooped him up and placed him on his perch and then calmly stripped the bed, washed the sheets, and disinfected the entire room before settling back down for the remaining ten minutes of sleep.)

"I'm not really sick. I just didn't want to go to school today."

I'm off to find a sheet for the loveseat and a TeeVee tray for some ginger ale and saltines. Ahhhhh, memory of my youth. Whenever we were sick (or faking it, ahem), Mom would put a cool crisp sheet on the couch and then let us camp out there with a little glass of ginger ale and saltines for company. Bliss.

Happy Weekend to all and to all a....well, um..Happy Weekend!


  1. Oh, poor Stewey (and you)! I know exactly what it's like to wake up in the middle of the night to the sounds of a furbaby getting sick....thank goodness for Nature's Miracle! I hope Stewey is feeling better today. Give him some extra cuddles from me and my Reggie sends puppy kisses.
    I love your progress on Wandering and the colors are great! I think I need to get some of that "Burnt Toast"... it is gorgeous!

  2. Aww, poor guy! Hope he feels better. Your Wandering is looking pretty - and Burnt Toast is fabulous!

  3. Poor little boy. He needs some sunshine also. I hope he gets better so he can watch the wildlife outside this weekend.

    You were a good mom by not screaming at him, throwing him off the bed and then kicking him out in the garage for the rest of the night. ---I really know some people that would do that. (my husband)

  4. I love the Burnt Toast. I do hope you finish that version too. Stella sends her best to Stewey for a speedy recovery. She'll play extra for him today at doggie daycare.

    When Stella rolled around in poop at the dog park on Tuesday, I was told how fabulous I was for keeping it together. But I know, sometimes you are just so worn down, it's easier to go along...Hope you catch up on your rest.

  5. Poor Stewey and poor you! I hope its out of his system.
    I agree wholeheartedly with your middle of the night revelation. It is probably a good thing that there are some stitchers and that we aren't all designers.

  6. Poor stewey. It's never fun to be sick even if you are a dog. Thor sends his love and wishes stewey to get better soon.
    *Doggie Licks*

  7. We didn't get the crispy sheet, but I do have happy memories of Ginger Ale and crackers. Aaaah. I hope Stewey's okay.

  8. Aw, poor Stewey. I hope he's feeling better! And poor you for having to clean all of it up.

    I hear you loud and clear on your rantings about not being a designer and it's okay to stitch things as the designer intended. I tend to run that way because I don't trust my decisions at all. I love when the design comes with different colorways - I steal one of them as my own. But in all truth, each of those that you did look great.

    And thanks for the comment on my blog and cheering me on with the WIPs. I'll be your cheering section too - I think we need all the help we can get, right? But I have to tell you that everytime I see you working on a needlepoint project, my skin starts itching to pull out one of mine! Maybe a little gnome will sneak in at night, start one of them for me and then I can call it a WIP! LOL

  9. Poor Stewey. Hope he is feeling better soon. And I like your latest attempt. Also like the burnt toast. Humm.. you could always pick another round of colors and do 3 versions and call it a Trilogy of Wanderings. Nah, not enough time to stitch everything as it is without repeating a process 2 or 3 times. Save that burnt toast for when you decide to break out of another (stitching) box. Its fun, isn't it.

    Yes, I have posted every day since you have been back. I am blog surfing (just certain ones)since my shoulders are out and I cannot stitch. I'm really not stalking you, Coni!

  10. Gingerale and crackers must have been taught in home ec way back. My mother did the same thing! And I too carry on the tradition.

    But instead of a nice crispy sheet, we got a towel and a bucket.

    Poor Stewey, it's awful to feel like that. Hopefully he's on the mend.

    And thank you Coni for your revelation! I can now stitch a pattern just as it is without feeling inadequate. You're an inspiration!

  11. Poor Stewey. Ihope the little guy is feeling better today!

  12. Ah the joys of pet ownership!. Poor little guy, hope he is better today.

    Have you noticed how ironic it is that you were wandering about deciding how to stitch wandering??

    Keep up the good work! And try to stay realatively sane in the process.

  13. Hello :-) I just discovered your blog. Love your cross stitch projects. I am just getting back into stitching again. Anyway, I was wondering if you would be interested in selling your Big Zipper charts when you are done? If not do you know someone who would? My email address is


  14. Oh, poor Stewey and Mom too! A word of caution. Bella Rose ingested over a skein and a half of "Silk & Ivory" needlepoint thread last year which had to be surgically removed. I was stitching away late into the night on a large Melissa Shirley elephant. As I was closing up for the evening, I noticed missing some thread but thought maybe I had left it at stitch class. The following morning I was taking Bella to the vet for grooming and mentioned the missing thread. She was asymptomatic at the time. Thankfully her Doc scoped her tummy and saw all the thread (too much to pull out through the endoscope); emergency surgery followed with a second surgery to repair herniating muscle through surgery incision. I cried and cried and threw the elephant in the garbage. I swore off stitching for weeks. Bella Rose made a full recovery. I too, recovered and decided I could stitch with loads of precautions. Every needle and thread has to be accounted for and all ORTS safely tossed. Bella has a circle of Mini Schnauzer Guardian Angels as she has had some close calls with her dietary indiscretions over her 3 years of age. So Stewey, behave yourself and don't partake of the pretty "Burnt Toast"

  15. I hope Stewey gets up and at soon. Someone needs to be there to keep you in line.

  16. Ugh, I really can't handle puking of any kind. Merlin treats me to some form of it regularly. You were very sweet to Stewey.

    I rarely feel confindent when changing colors in a design, but sometimes it works out wonderfully. My problem is that I have to see it, rather than imagine it, before I recognize it won't work.